The church holds annual traditional celebrations and
communal activities, as well as monthly activities.

Church activities:

Calendar of Public Worship at Holy Trinity
Click to open

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Holy Trinity Day, Holy Pentecost and Fathers' Day
On June 4th the Parish held a triple celebration: the Holy Trinity Day, Holy Pentecost and Fathers' Day. We received many guests. The church hall was festively decorated, lunch was prepared and served by hard working volunteers to whom we express our big Thank You. The celebration ended with rich program of dances and traditional songs.
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Mother’s Day Dance
On May 13th the Holy Trinity church jointly with MPO (Macedonian Patriotic Organization) celebrated Mother’s Day with the traditional dance. The evening was well attended and was marked by fun, music and good food. A good tribute to all mothers.
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St. George’s Day and Votive Offering
On May 7th the Parish celebrated the Day of St. George. The Batov Family once again gave the traditional votive offering. This festive family tradition marks every year a happy rescue or saving out of trouble. Thank you, Oleg, Alexandra, Nick, Eva and Oracio visiting from Turin, Italy for the tasty “kourban” banquet. Everyone noted the special presence of baby Daniel! Our master-chef Chris was once again at five star level!
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Easter / Holy Pascha
The Easter services and festivities spread over the Holy week. Parishioners and families attended the litany and commemoration of Our Lord's Passion on Good Friday in order to prepare most fully for Christ's resurrection on Easter Sunday. Good Friday is a day of strict fasting and abstinence.
The Holy week culminated on Saturday before Easter (Easter Eve).  Holy Saturday commemorates the day that Jesus Christ lay in the tomb after his death, according to the Christian bible. In the packed church yard, all holding lit candles, the Parish Priest Fr. Velitchko announced the Holy Resurrection: “Christ is Risen!”. And all the people joined him in singing this hymn again and again “Truly He is Risen!”. The Divine Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom was then officiated. 
On Easter Sunday the faithful gathered once more for prayer with lighted candles. All sing the hymn, "Christ is Risen from the Dead". The people greeted one another joyously. The Gospel according to John is read in various languages, proclaiming the Good News of Resurrection all over the universe.
The Holy Trinity Macedono-Bulgarian church once again celebrated Easter joyously. We send the message to all faithful: Christ is risen from the dead, by death trampling down upon death, and to those in the tombs He has granted life. 
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Palm Sunday
Once again on April 9 the glorious Entry in Jerusalem was celebrated by numerous parishioners and guests. The church was filled with smiles, greetings, flowers and anticipation of Easter. Everyone received the blessed greenery to bring home.
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St. Lazar’s Day and Singing Party
The Church remembers St Lazarus on the Saturday of the Sixth Week of Great Lent, "Lazarus Saturday. See HERE the story of The Righteus Lazarus.
The Bulgarian tradition on this day involves the young girls and maidens to dress beautifully, to decorate with flowers and to sing songs dedicated to the upcoming spring, love and marriage. The flower crowns are let flow in the spring rivers and creeks. After the service at our church the girls were delighted to prepare their crowns, to receive blessing by Fr. Velitchko. Under the guidance of Popadia and Roumiana a small ceremony was held. A group of talented voices took the initiative to sing a suite of traditional Bulgarian and Macedonian songs.
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Akathist to The Mother of God
The period of the Great Lent comes with the joyful church services full of deep meaning and poetic exaltation dedicated to Our Lady Theotocos. This year our church was host of two of these solemn rites: on March 10 and 31. The service was followed by the traditional brotherly all vegetarian table at which all guests of the sister churches were invited. Our parishioners took part in the Akathist services hosted by Sts Cyril and Methody church (March 3), St George church (March 17) and St Dimityr church (March 24). The priests Frs. Drangov, Mihaylov, Shumarov and Radulovich as well as Fr. Arnaudov on March 3 officiated and warmed our hearts with the beautiful Akathist hymns.
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Annual General Meeting
The AGM of the church was held on Sunday, March 19 in presence of the members and parishioners. There was a majority needed of members present. President’s address by Nick Stefanoff was followed by a brief review of the past year. A report on the church finances was given by the President. In an open discussion members and parishioners were active and decisions were made on pressing issues and financial strategy. Minutes from the meeting as well as amended version of the Statement of Income and Expenses for 2016 will be published in the next month update of this site.

Memorial Saturday
On February 25th the church held the first of the three Memorial Saturdays (Zadushnitza or Martva Sabota) before the Great Lent. The Church calendar makes it easier for us to enter this period of prayer and fasting with a thought for the departed. Peace to their souls!

Forgiveness Sunday
February 26th. The church community celebrated the traditional Forgiveness Sunday (Sirni Zagovezny) with brotherly table. A large group of our youngest children participated in a joyous traditional Zagovezny activities: the “halva catching” competition and the “martenitza” making workshop. Under the guidance of Roumiana Andreeva and Popadia Svetlana they drew colourful Baba Marta cards and gave them to their parents and siblings.
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We present:
Notes about the village of Smrdesh, Kostur region (new name Kristalopigi, Kastoria region) by Mario Tzvetkov. History, Geography, Personalities (in Bulgarian).

Old Tyme Christmas
On Sunday, January 8th the church community celebrated the traditional Old Tyme Christmas with brotherly banquet table and festivities. Delicious lunch was prepared by a Macedonian catering, specialized in “pulneni piperki” (stuffed red peppers). The following people each gave $100 toward the Christmas dinner: Anthony Kartalev, Paul Kizoff, Chris Torbar, Fred Meanchoff, Nick Stefanoff and George Koroloff.
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Christmas Celebration
On December 25th the parish celebrated in joyful atmosphere the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ. After the solemn liturgy a brotherly table was served in the church hall. The children received special blessing. Songs and dances by our children were dedicated to Nativity and New Year. There were presents around the Christmas tree.
After the performance the young talents participated in a workshop fabricating their own creative “sourvaknitza” or “sourvachka”. The old folklore custom “sourvakane” (gently beating on the back with a decorated branch of a cornel tree) is practiced on the New Years's Day by the children in the family and in the neighborhood. It brings in a song or poetry form the best wishes for the upcoming year. The leader of the workshop was once again Roumiana Andreeva.
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We present New Books and Websites:

The Great Powers and Orthodox Christendom
The Great Powers and Orthodox Christendom. The Crisis over the Eastern Church in the Era of the Crimean War by Jack Fairey, Springer, Sep 15, 2015, 283 pages
This new political history of the Orthodox Church in the Ottoman Empire explains why Orthodoxy became the subject of acute political competition between the Great Powers during the mid 19th century. It also explores how such rivalries led, paradoxically, both to secularizing reforms and to Europe's last great war of religion - the Crimean War.

Drenoveni. The Life and Demise of a Macedonian Village.
Drenoveni. The Life and Demise of a Macedonian Village by Larry Koroloff. Pickering, 2014.
Since its publishing in 2014 the book of our well known compatriot Labro Koroloff became very popular. Now the book appears in Bulgarian edition, translated and published by the Macedonian Scientific Institute in Sofia under the title “Дрено́вени: Разцвет и разорение на едно село в Южна Македония”

Belo More. Photos and illustrations from Aegean Macedonia
Bulgarian military graves in Zeytinlaka
Istoriya.bg

Annual Church Bazaar
On October 2nd was held the annual bazaar of Holy Trinity Macedonian-Bulgarian church. Many parishioners, family members and guests attended and supported the church with donations and through the bake and diverse sales. Delicious lunch was served. Many participated and enjoyed gifts from the lucky draw.
From the bazaar the church made a net profit of
$3,632.85 (see the detailed report here).
Income from the donations collected on this day –
$795.00 (see list here).
Many volunteers gave their time and skills for this successful event. The church thanks cordially to all volunteers, kitchen helpers, bake masters and to all who supported this important annual event. Special gratitude goes to Popadia Svetlana Mihaylova for her role in the organization and coordination.
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In September St. George Macedono-Bulgarian eastern orthodox church celebrated 75 years since its founding. It is our pleasant duty to congratulate our sister church. We have relatives, friends and countrymen among St. George's parishioners and we are proud that many of our own ancestors were among the founders. Holy Trinity wishes St. George Happy Anniversary! Keep up the good work!
On September 18th a solemn holy liturgy was served at St. George by his Eminence Metropolitan Joseph. Memorial service was held for the founding members. A beautiful new altar mural “Annunciation” by Roumen Kirinkov was consecrated.
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On the occasion of this year's Ilinden celebration, Father Velichko prepared a compilation of traditional popular patriotic songs under the title “16 Songs About Struggles and Suffering For Human Justice”.
For every song there is a summary of the text in English. At the Ilinden picnic the group singing went on with joy and enthusiasm. On popular demand we include the patriotic songbook.
Patriotic Songbook

In memoriam: Nikola Shaykov (1912-1996)
„We will never know how many countrymen lived with the name Bulgaria in their hearts during their lifetime. They are innumerable. But let's strive with our deeds to deserve the right to call ourselves their younger brothers.”
Nikola Shaykov
Article by Vassil Popvassilev
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41st Annual Diocesan Convention
The 41st Annual Diocesan Convention was hosted by “St. Sophia” Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Church in Des Plaines, IL, July 15-17, 2016. His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph and His Grace Bishop Daniil were joined by clergy and delegates from a majority of the parishes, monasteries and missions of the Diocese in a three day gathering to strengthen our spiritual life and to discuss important Diocesan business.
Our church - Holy Trinity was represented by the President of the Church Committee, Mr. Nick Stefanoff and his wife Margaret.
Mr Stefanoff summarized the event: “The convention centered upon proposed changes to the Diocese bylaws. The majority of the delegates agreed in principle to most of the changes but had concerns with some of the wording. Others wanted the right to appeal incorporated into the new bylaws. The decision was made to defer approval until the bylaws are revised to reflect these concerns.”
Minutes of the Convention 2016
RESOLUTIONS

On July 31st Holy Trinity celebrated the beginning of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary Lent with a picnic in the church garden and brotherly potluck table.
Favorite lyrical folk songs resounded sung by parishioners and guests in high spirits despite the rain. Lyrics of the songs were compiled and skillfully presented in both Cyrillic and Latin transcription in a booklet by Father Velichko.
Lyrical Folk Songs
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On Sunday, August 21 was held the MPO Victory’s annual Ilinden Panihida & Luncheon.
The parish once again respected the heroic uprising. The memorial service was held by Very Rev. parish priest Velichko, his sermon was centered on the theme of courage and the fearless self-sacrifice:
“Today in a memorial prayer we commemorate all those brave people who were killed in the Ilinden rebellion and in the struggles for faith and freedom.  We consider ourselves descendants of their brave spirit.  May this commemoration give courage also to us to stand for what we believe in and to be persistent in seeking what is good and beneficial for all.”
Let the heroes and all the innocent victims of the Turkish repressions rest in peace! May God remember them in His Kingdom!
A picnic in the church garden in support of the MPO followed the service. All the parishioners and guests were united in singing our beloved revolutionary songs. The lyrics of the songs were compiled and presented in a booklet by Father Velichko.
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Invitation to MPO Victory’s annual Ilinden Panihida & Luncheon

Holy Trinity Day, Holy Pentecost and Fathers Day
On June 19th the Parish held a triple celebration: the Holy Trinity Day, Holy Pentecost and Fathers' Day. We received many guests. The church hall was festively decorated, lunch was prepared and served by hard working volunteers to whom we express our big Thank You. The Fathers Day cake was cut by one of the Elders in the Parish – Dimitar Atzev.
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Archpastoral Paschal Message
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Educational Work of the Bulgarian Exarchate
In the next month we will cover this gigantic democratic movement, guided and skillfully directed by the Exarchate.
Part 1 – Under Ottoman Rule
Part 2 – After the Russo-Turkish War
Part 3 – Before Ilinden
Part 4 – Conclusion
Articles by Vassil Popvassilev
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Mothers' Day and Votive Offering
On May 8th the Parish celebrated Mothers' Day and the Day of St. George. The Batov Family once again gave the traditional votive offering. This festive family tradition that marks every year a happy rescue or saving out of trouble. Thank you, Oleg, Alexandra, Nick and remotely - Eva and Oracio in Turin, Italy for the tasty “kourban” banquet. Our master-chef Chris was once again at five star level!
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Spring Cleaning
On April 5th a group of caring volunteers, supported by the caretakers, led by Popadia Svetlana did a spring cleaning and organization of the premises for the upcoming Easter celebrations. In the name of the Parish - many thanks from the Church Committee!

On March 5th the church held the first of the three Memorial Saturdays (Zadushnitza before the Great Lent). The Church calendar makes it easier for us to enter this period of prayer and fasting with a thought for the departed. Peace to their souls!

March 13th. The church community celebrated the traditional Forgiveness Sunday with brotherly table.
Big thank you to the volunteers helping to prepare and serve the delicious menu: Geny (the Master Chef), Tala Lexovski, Mitzy Soukaris, Vicky Dranitzaris, Josie Kizoff, Sofie Anton, Toshko Mihailov, Mary, Helen and Luba, Krassi. Also acknowledgment and thanks to the donations of Grozda Kirkov, Dotza Boychevska, Tzveta Varadeva.
On the same day our good church member Tzveta celebrated her birthday. We enjoyed the grand cake and sang cheerfully for her.
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Annual General Meeting
The AGM was held on March 6 attended by members and the church committee at the following agenda:
1. Opening Prayer followed by a moment of silence for those members and parishioners who died this past year.
2. President's Address and Brief Review of this Past Year
3. Church Financials
4. Church Bylaws
5. Election of Church Board Members
6. Other Business
See posted:
Minutes of the meeting
Financial Statement for 2013, 2014 and 2015

V. Rev. Blagoi Tchiflianov Celebration and Old Tyme Christmas, 2016
On January 10 we celebrated the 93rd birthday of our former parish priest V. Rev. Blagoi Tchiflianov, Professor. The Consul General of Republic of Bulgaria Mr Petar Kraitchev recognized his merits to the community as a distinguished Bulgarian spiritual leader and for his long years of service to the “preservation and strengthening of the Bulgarian national spirit, culture and identity in Canada”. More than 130 parishioners and guests attended the ceremony, among them the parish prioest V. Rev. Velitchko Mihailov and the curch President Nick Stefanoff. Greetings and best wishes followed.
The church community celebrated on same day, January 10, the traditional Old Tyme Christmas with brotherly banquet table and festivities. Big thank you to the volunteers: Tala, Vicky, Grozda, Margarita, Milka, Popadia Svetlana, the Bodanis Sisters. In addition to the donations on that occasion the church collected $1180 from the banquet and $360 from the lucky draw.
Photo gallery - V. Rev. Tchiflianov
Photo gallery - Old Tyme Christmas

Brotherly Christmas Table on December 20th.
On this occasion the merry group of young parents and their little agile crafts specialists fabricated the traditional Survachki.
Again organizer and guide was Roumiana Andreeva. Thank you all, your work was beautiful (next time clean more thoroughly after the workshop).
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In the Christmas Spirit
December is the month in which we breathlessly expect to celebrate the joyful Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ! Merry Christmas, peace and brotherly love to all!
Leading image for the month:
Nativity of Christ, icon from Jerusalem (19 AD)

The Role of the Greek Patriarchate Under Turkish Balkan Rule (1353-1912)
Article by Christ Anastasoff, from Balkanika magazine,
volume 2, number 3 (1968).
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Exarch Antim I of Bulgaria
Next January 2016 we mark the 200 years of the birth of Exarch Antim I, whose name resounds every Sunday in the Holy Liturgy as a first Exarch of the reborn autonomous Bulgarian Church. We pay tribute to the distinguished religious and people's leader from the time of the struggle for cultural and religious independence, for the indivisible spiritual unity of our nation. This struggle laid the ground for the subsequent national upheaval which led to the liberation from the Ottoman rule and from the spiritual oppression of the Greek clergy. Today our Macedonian-Bulgarian churches follow with dignity the spirit and the deeds of our first Exarchs. May his memory live forever!
Vassil Popvassilev.
Biographical notes.
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Annual Church Bazaar
On October 4th was held the annual bazaar of Holy Trinity Macedonian-Bulgarian church. Many parishioners, family members and guests attended and supported the church with donations and through the bake and diverse sales. Delicious lunch was served.
Many volunteers gave their time and skills for this successful event: Luba, Mery and Helen Bodanis, Tina Andonov, Sophy Papagiannis and Polyxeni, Christina Perelov, Vicky Traikov, Tala Lexovski, Grozda Kirkova, Margaret Stefanoff, Milka Mihailoff, Zorka Argiloff, Roumiana Andreev, Jeannie, Josie, Katia, Victoria (Vidka), Mitzy, Snejana and Lina (the kids lemonade coordinators), Toshko Mihailov, Jean Hervieux, Nick Stefanoff, Fred Meanchoff and the Popadia Svetlana.
In the name of the congregation big thank you for the huge success!
From the bazaar the church made a profit of $3,735.65, broken down as follows:
Admissions $106.55; Lunch $1,198.75; Bake sale $947.00; Crafts & Goods Sales $517.30; Raffle $444.50; Kids Lemonade Stand $47.00; Donations to the bazaar totaled $957.45; Expenses $482.90
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Exarch Yossif I of Bulgaria.
To mark the 175 years since the birth of Exarch Yossif I of Bulgaria and 100 years of his death, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church organized series of festive events and celebrations.
We pay tribute to the distinguished religious and people's leader from the time of building the indivisible spiritual unity of our nation. The National Upheaval and Enlightenment, the common will for Church independence laid the ground of this unity and the diplomatic genius and wisdom of Exarch Yossif strengthened it.
Today our Macedonian-Bulgarian churches follow with dignity the spirit and the deeds of the Exarch. May his memory live forever!
Vassil Popvassilev.
Biographical notes.
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The Ochrid Literary School and the Development of Bulgarian Culture.
The origins, main forces and contributors behind the Ochrid Literary School, a major cultural center of Old Slavonic-Bulgarian Language and Education.
Article by Prof. Emil Georgiev, Academician, published in the revue Balcanica Volume V, #2,
excerpts translated N. Roussanoff.

Editor's notes by Vassil Popvassilev.
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Diocese Convention 2015
The 40th Convention of the Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Diocese of the USA., Canada and Australia took place in St Thomas Eastern Orthodox Church at Fairlawn, OH, USA on July 17, 18 and 19th 2015.    
The report of the Metropolitan, titled “State of the Diocese” addressed two major issues:  
- The Civil Court proceedings in relation to “St. Cyril and Methody Macedono-Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Cathedral” in Toronto, Ontario, Canada; and
- The Decision of the Diocesan Spiritual Court from March 19-21, 2015 in relation to the situation at St. Innocent’s Academy in Alaska.  
Among the other important resolutions, the 40th Annual Convention of the Diocese also mentioned about the report of Metropolitan Joseph “The Committee for Canonical Regional Planning” and the position of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church – Bulgarian Patriarchate regarding the future of the Orthodoxy in North America.  
The parish priests (and in their absence a representatives of the parishes) presented very brief reports. 
The Convention ended with majestic divine liturgy officiated by His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph, His Grace Bishop Daniil and all the priests present at the convention.
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July 26 - Ilinden Celebration and Memorial Service
On Sunday July 26, 2015 was held our traditional celebration of the Ilinden Ressurection – the heroic uprising against the Ottoman rule in Macedonia and the Odrin region. The divine liturgy was followed by a solemn Panihida (memorial service) officiated by Rev. Velitchko and Rev. Boris Drangov. The speech by the parish priest the V. Rev. Velichko Mihailov on Ilinden outlined the legacy of the Ilinden Heroes.
The celebration followed by a memorial lunch in the presence of many guests from the other Macedonian-Bulgarian churches. The event was held under the auspices of MPO (The Macedonian Patriotic Organization).
Big help in the preparation and running the BBQ piknick were the volunteers:  Jean Hervieux, Milka Mihailoff, Fred Mehanchoff, Margarita Stefanoff.  In the name of all the parishioners and guests – Big Thank you!
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Rayko Zhinzifov (1839 Veles – 1877 Moscow)
Rayko Zhinzifov - Publicist, Poet, Journalist, Translator, Teacher. A well known leader of the Bulgarian national and cultural Revival in his native Macedonia.
Translation and editor's notes by Vassil Popvassilev.
Speech by Rayko Zhinzifov at the Pan-slavic Congress in Moscow 1857.
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Holy Trinity Day - May 31, 2015
On May 31 was held the Feast Day of our church – The Holy Pentecost. We celebrated in presence of parishioners, friends, families and guests with a church service and the traditional banquet.
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The Rock Monasteries near Rousse
One of the nine sites in Bulgaria recognized by UNESCO as part of the World Cultural Heritage, based on its unique frescoes. Impressive testimony of the devotion and of the religious fervor of the rulers and spiritual leaders of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom (XIII-XIV c.)
Based on publications by Rusenski Lom Nature Park Directorate and by Rousse Regional Museum of History.
Translation and editor's notes by Vassil Popvassilev.
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Easter
The Ester celebrations were a feast of faith, hope and brotherly love. Our parish priest Father Velitchko once again thoroughly prepared and conducted the services with spiritual depth and exceptional melodic beauty. Christ Is Risen!
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Akathyst
On February 27th and on March 27th our church, Holy Trinity, was host to two of the five Akathyst pre-Easter services in honour of Our Lady Mother of God. The rest of the services were held in Sts. Cyrill and Methodius cathedral. St. George's and St. Dimitry's churches and were joined by many members of our parish. The celebrations, the hymns, the brotherly tables were enjoyed by all.
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AGM 2015
On March 8th the Annual General Meeting was held in presence of the Church Committee and many members. The agenda of the meeting (not an electoral this year) included replacement of the retiring Treasurer Paul Kizoff.
The new Treasurer is Jean Hervieux, supported by unanimous vote. Vassil Popvassilev replaces Julian Lall as church Secretary. New Committee member Victoria Triffonov replaces Helen Grancharoff. Helen, together with Chris Torbar remain Honorary Members.
Deliberations followed on the subjects of finances, caretakers and maintenance, new membership, electronic database.

Spring Cleaning
On April 4th a group of enthusiastic ladies, supported by the caretakers and led by the tireless Popadia Svetlana organized a spring cleaning and organization of the premises for the upcoming Easter celebrations. Participated: Zorka, Tonia, Rumiana, Tania, Ilian, Slava, Krassimira. Many thanks from the Church Committee and best wishes for happy Easter holidays!

Ivan Vazov – Patriarch of the Bulgarian Literatuire
This month we acknowledge Ivan Vazov (1850 –1921) the great Bulgarian poet, novelist and playwright, often referred to as "the Patriarch of Bulgarian literature". He was born in Sopot, a town in the Rose Valley of Bulgaria (then part of the Ottoman Empire). The works of Ivan Vazov reveal two historical epochs - the Bulgarian Renaissance and the Post-Liberation (from Ottoman Empire rule) epoch. Ivan Vazov holds the highest honorary title of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences - Academician. His works are close to every Bulgarian heart. Vazov is well known and translated in all major languages.
The article by Nicholas Roussanoff was published in the revue Balkania, Volume VI, number 1 in 1972.
Translation and editor's notes by Vassil Popvassilev.
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Martenitza making
On February 22nd a group of enthusiastic mothers and supporters led by the tireless Roumiana Andreeva organized a demo and workshop of the traditional Bulgarian craft of the martenitza making. In preparation of the 1st of March celebrations and the upcoming spring the children were practicing songs and traditional verses. Outstanding work on the beautiful martenitzas besides the children was done by Snejana, Theodora, Tania, Boika. The same day we marked the beginning of the Great Lent and the Sunday of Forgiveness.
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Father Paissios, a Forerunner of the Bulgarian National Revival
Article by Dr. Emil Georgiev, published in the revue Balkania, Volume VI, number 3 in 1972.
Translation and editor's notes by Vassil Popvassilev.
This month we acknowledge the majestic historical figure of Father Paissios, a modest monk at a Mount Athon monastery who researched and wrote the first modern-time history of Bulgaria, created numerous copied of it and tirelessly distributed it throughout towns and villages of the country. Many more copies followed thus boosting the Bulgarian national awakening and the beginning of a new epoch for the Bulgarian people.
Father Paissios was proclaimed a Saint of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church.
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Further to our leading theme “1000 Years Since the Death of Tsar Samuel” we publish excerpts of the original texts by the Byzantine scholar and historian Ioannis Scylitzes (11-12 AD) covering the main events of his reign. The article by Ivan Mihailoff, published on this site in December uses many medieval sources one of them is Scylitzes. The historical facts in the work of Scylitzes are a honest testimony not aimed to glamorize one or another ruler. For the contemporary reader it is a proof that the heroic battle led by Samuel against the Byzantines was in fact a defense of Bulgaria in these tumultuous times.
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On January 4, we celebrated the Old Tyme Christmas
and the begin of the New year, a traditional annual event, marked by a strong community spirit. We were pleased to greet our youngest performers who sang the joyful Christmas classics and traditional Bulgarian winter songs. We enjoyed the food prepared and served by our volunteers: Velika Traikoff, Tala Lexovski, Done Tchaleff and Vicky Dranitsaris. The Bulgarian red wine gave us warmth and cheered the new year.
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This month we commemorate the one thousand years anniversary since the death of Tsar Samouil of Bulgaria within the framework of “National Program 1000 Years Tsar Samouil” of The Republic of Bulgaria.”
Our tribute to this glorious anniversary is an article by Ivan Mihailoff, published in the revue Balkania in 1969. We reprint this historical analysis based on proven facts as it offers a contemporary assessment of the great medieval ruler.
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The Bulgarian Archiepiscopate of Ochrid, 1018-1767
Exhibition at The National History Museum, Sofia, Bulgaria, October 2014.

The exhibition is organized as part of the National Program to commemorate the one thousand years anniversary since the death of Tsar Samouil of Bulgaria. Organizers: National History Museum, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, National Program 1000 Years Tsar Samouil.
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For Bulgarian Citizens: Parliamentary Elections 2014
Announcement of the Embassy of Republic of Bulgaria, Ottawa.

On Sunday August 17th, was held our traditional celebration of Assumption of Our Lady Theotocos, the most important church holiday venerating Mother-of-God. The liturgy was followed by a picnic and potluck lunch in the presence of many parishioners and guests. All ladies, bearing the glorious name of Maria were celebrated with a solemn hymn “Mnogaia Leta”.
The masters of the BBQ lunch and delicious salads and fruits were Jean Hervieux, Milka MihaIlov, Nick and Margarita Stefanov. As always, our big thanks to them!
At the event was announced the official retirement of Fred Mehanchoff, member of the Church Committee. He was warmly greeted and wished well by the parish priest, by the church president and by the church community. Many happy years ahead, Freddy!
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The 39th Annual General Diocesan Convention
The official delegates of our church at the Convention were Very Reverend Velichko Mihailov and his wife Popadia Svetlana. We are very pleased that our church has been mentioned with honors in the official annual report of the Diocese.
We wish to thank Father Velichko for his active participation in the work of the Convention and for the summary he shared with the community and kindly prepared for publishing on this site.
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Convention summary.

On Sunday July 13, was held our traditional celebration of the Ilinden Ressurection – the heroic uprising against the Ottoman rule in Macedonia and the Odrin region. The divine liturgy was followed by a solemn panihida (memorial service). The speech by the parish priest the V. Rev. Velichko Mihailov on Ilinden outlined the epic struggle and suffering of our people and moved the parish. It put accent on the sacrifice for the community.
The celebration followed by a memorial lunch in the presence of many guests from the other Macedonian-Bulgarian churches. The event was held under the auspices of MPO (The Macedonian Patriotic Organization).
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Excerpt on Gotzé Delchev from the novel "Ilinden" by Dimiter Talev.

On June 8, Pentecost, was held our annual banquet and celebration of the Holy Trinity Day – the name day of the church. We were happy to see the three priests serving the Divine Liturgy: our current parish priest the V. Rev. Velichko Mihailov and the two former priests V. Rev. Prof. Blagoi Chiflianov and V.Rev. Krustan Voukashinov, both retired. Father Krustan is among us for a short visit from Bulgaria.
Welcome back to your beloved parish, Father Krustan, we wish you a pleasant stay in Toronto!
Address-summary by Father Velichko.
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On May 14 this year was the 100 years anniversary of Boris Christoff, the legendary Bulgarian basso, whose brilliant international opera career brought him recognition and worldwide glory. Christoff was a devoted Christian whose extraordinary talent and thorough knowledge contributed to the fame of his legacy in the field of the Orthodox liturgy music.
In our church on June 22 we hosted a lecture by Mariana Strougarov, who as a long time choir singer and expert in music history has done thorough research on the life and artistic legacy of Boris Christoff. The lecture was accompanied by visual and acoustic presentations of historic appearances of the great artist on the world stage. Our gratitude to Mariana for her patriotic initiative and professional presentation.
“Boris Christoff 100th Anniversary” by Mariana Strougarov.

On May 11 the Church calendar marks the day of Sts. Cyril and Methody. May 24 is a national, state holiday in Bulgaria, Day of the Slavo-Bulgarian Culture and Education. We honour and celebrate the creation of the Slavic alphabet by the Sts. Brothers Cyril and Methody. The celebration was introduced in Bulgarian churches and schools throughout the country the in early 19th century. Eternal glory to the holy brothers, venerated by the whole Slavic world, Apostles of Europe! Photo gallery.

Christ is Risen!
As every year, the Easter holidays were a manifestation of faith, of joy of the upcoming spring renewal, strong proof of parish solidarity and brotherly love.  The cool weather did not prevent us from doing the traditional ceremony of outdoors services.  The divine liturgies were solemn, attended by numerous parishioners and friends.  Bulgarians and Macedonians, our common traditions unite us.  The traditional Easter bread and eggs brought joy to  every heart.

The April 1876 Uprising against the Ottoman Yoke
Excerpts from an article. Constantinople Conference.

Akathyst

It is a long time tradition at our Macedonian-Bulgarian churches to tribute honour and glory to Our Most Holy Lady Theotocos in a series of pre-Easter Friday night services called Akathyst. This ancient rite consists of hymns, poetry and divine service followed by a brotherly dinner. Our church, Holy Trinity was once again host of two of these evenings, on March 21st and April 11th. We enjoyed the beautiful singing of the priests, serene atmosphere and a tasty Lent dinner. The volunteers who contributed with dishes and plateau, with serving and organizing the events were: Zora, Krassimira, Vicky, Tala, presbythera Svetlana, Hristina and George, Vassil, Nelly, Aunt Maria. During the Akathyst services donations of $531 to the church were made. In the name of the Church Committee a warm Thank You to all who helped to keep up with the beautiful tradition.

Easter Cleaning of the Church. In the week preceding the begin of the Easter festivities, a thorough cleaning of the church was made by a group of volunteers: Zora, Vicky, Jasmina, Krassimira, Done, Presbythera Svetlana, Nelly, Kalinka.  They did a great work, the church is even more beautiful now.

Grigor Purlichev – a great son of Macedonia, who devoted his whole life and sacrificed  fame, talent, career and personal bell-being before the altar of the enslaved Bulgarian people.

On the 23rd of February our parish held the traditional Meatfare Sunday lunch. The occasion is the beginning of the Great Lent and the week of Forgiveness. The church community extends a warm gratitude to Velika (Vicky) Traikova for the organization, great culinary work and donated food.

“To be equal with the other European peoples depends only on our own and joint efforts.”
Vassil Levsky, 1837 – 1873

On February 19th we honour and worship Bulgaria’s legendary national hero, Vassil Levsky, who, in the early 1870s, led an underground movement against the five-century old Ottoman occupation. On that date he was hanged in Sofia. Although he met his death on the gallows three years before the 1876 uprising – the bloody suppression of which provoked international protests – Levsky was the architect and the inspiration of the secret societies behind it. Destined for career in the church, he renounced his monastic vows to create – under the very noses of the Turkish police – a remarkable revolutionary organization, with hundreds of committees all over Bulgaria and its own police force and secret post, and with the ultimate aim of setting up an independent Bulgarian republic within a Balkan federation based on self-determination.
Among numerous Bulgarians who plotted the downfall of the Ottoman Empire, Vassil Levsky emerges as one of the most attractive and level-headed rebels ever to espouse the cause of liberty, equality and fraternity.
He later inspired Gotze Delchev and the other leaders of the Macedonian liberation movement. His revolutionary ideology and tactics served as a model for the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization in the preparation of the Ilinden uprising.
Vassil Popvassilev (after Mercia MacDermott “The Apostle of Freedom”, Sofia Press 1986)

On November 25, 2013 we honour and worship the outstanding figure of St. Clement of Ohrid, devoted student of Cyril and Methody, contributed invaluable service to the cause of Slavic culture, proclaimed “first archbishop of Bulgarian language”.
The work of St. Clement covered Western Macedonia where he had taught over 3500 students, “training them for readers, deacons and presbyter work”. He, along with his teachers Cyril and Methody, is considered in Bulgaria to the present day a symbol of national educational activity. The patron saint of the national University of Sofia and of The National Student Day in Bulgaria (December 8th), St. Clement is now and will forever preserve the true meaning and significance of national literary consciousness and culture, humanity and progress.
Vassil Popvassilev

On Sunday, October 20th, 2013 the church held the Annual Bazaar at which once again the culinary skills by members of the Ladies Section were demonstrated.  The warmth and high spirit of the pre-Christmas gathering is long established tradition.  Help and support by many volunteers contributed the Bazaar to become a financial success.  Big thank you to all of them!

On Sunday, September 15, 2013 the church held
the annual Holy Trinity’s Family Day Barbecue
Many parishioners and guests were invited to enjoy
good food, good music and good company in the
garden after the church service.
We celebrated the backbone of our religious and cultural
heritage - our families! Large families were present
with babas, dedos, parents and children.
Special contribution to the success of the Family Day
from the volunteers Jean and Milka Hervieux,
Nick Stefanoff, Fred Mehanchov was greatly appreciated.
Jean and Milka also donated the food. Thank you all!

28 July 2013 - Celebration and Memorial Service
of the Ilinden-Preobrajenie 1903 Resurrection
Illinden’s Epic Struggle by Christ Atanasoff
For more ILinden materials in Bulgarian language
please refer to the Bulgarian section of the site

38th Annual Convention of the Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Diocese of the USA, Canada and Australia in Santa Rosa, California
Patriarchal Greetings to the Diocese Convention
Cherubic Hymn
Katavasii - Passover of Christ


Holy Trinity Day, June 4, 2017 icon  
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